Every year instead of a one off “best of” post I look back on the year that was with a series of reposts. These may not be on anyone elses best records of the year list, but to me they are some of the most important, most overlooked, or just plain “most” records of the year. Expect 10-15 of these type of posts over the next three weeks. This post on the band Antietam was originally published in early January of 2008.
Antietam is one of these strange lost bands from the 80′s that deserve a reunion, but really, whoever thought they’d get one. Others in this category include Big Dipper, The Embarrassment, Fetchin’ Bones, Buffalo Tom and Swimming Pool Q’s. The band that released it’s early work on Cosloy’s Homestead Records, now sees it’s long awaited double disc of new material put out on the iconoclastic Chicago label Carrot Top. (Read more about it’s early releases here at Vinyl Mine).
At the time that Antietam was kicking around the Atlantic coast they were one of the noisiest “art-rock” bands on the scene. Like many of the individuals from that era the band has mellowed with age. On the new record, Opus Mixtum, Tara and company get the sound of the swirling, lightly psychadelic guitars just right and the vocals, a la Mo Tucker and Joan Jett, are equally adept. Tara Key had been called one of the best guitarists of her generation and you can hear why on the distorted intro to “Time Creeps” and the lead guitar lines on “Shipshape”. Perhaps this is the record the band should have made twenty years ago?
Preorder the new record here.